Review by Xhunter11
It could have been so much more
For 15 years, gamers the world over have enjoyed the fast-paced action of the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. Now that his 15th anniversary is here, SEGA has released a game that, according to them, creates a sense of speed that is only capable on next-gen consoles. Being a Sonic fan myself, I decided to check this game out. Allow me to share with you my thoughts:
The storyline for Sonic the Hedgehog revolves around three groups of people. The first group being Sonic, Elise, and Eggman. Elise is the princess of Soleanna, the city of water, and holds the secret to the "flames of disaster." Eggman arrives in Soleanna wishing to know the what the secret is, and to do that, he must capture Elise. Sonic just so happens to be in Soleanna as well, and he isn't gonna let Eggman do that.
The second group is Shadow, Rouge, Omega, and Mephilis. Shadow and Rouge now work for the GUN military faction, and they are trying to locate an item known as the Scepter of Darkness. When they find it, they accidently unseal Mephilis the Dark, who is a mysterious creature who can travel through time. Shadow, Rouge, and Omega team up to find out the history behind Mephilis and take him down.
The third group is Silver, Blaze, and Iblis. In the future, the world has been destroyed by a fire creature called Iblis. Silver and Blaze have vowed to stop him no matter the cost, but everytime they defeat him, he comes back good as new. Silver and Blaze meet Mephilis in the future and he tells them that the only way to defeat Iblis is to kill the person who unleashed him in the past, which just so happens to be Sonic.
The overall storyline is pretty cool, but there is a lot of time-travelling so you have to pay attention or you might get confused. In addition to that, some of the story scenes don't make much sense and don't fit into the story very well. Overall, I enjoyed the story, and it kept me interested.
Story Score: 8/10
The graphics in this game look pretty good. The FMV clips are awesome, and the in-game graphics are top-notch. However, there are some odd graphical glitches. Enemies and parts of the level will disappear and reappear for no reason, and there game slows down when there are too many enemies on the screen.
Graphics Score: 7/10
Music & Sound:
The voice cast in this game is a mixed bag. I liked the voices for Shadow, Mephilis, and Eggman, but the rest of the voices ranged between average and just plain bad. Sonic, Elise, and Silver are okay, but since you're going to be hearing a lot of them, you'd wish that the actors would have put more effort into their roles. The acting can be a bit B-movie quality at times, but is bearable for the most part.
On the other hand, the music is amazing. All of the stage songs are great to listen to, and I love the character theme songs. Whoever did the soundtrack for this should be permanently do music for the Sonic series.
Music Score: 10/10
Sound Score: 7/10
And here is where this game falls apart. While the game is playable, be prepared to suffer through A LOT of cheap deaths to a game that feels half-finished. Sometimes characters won't jump when you press X, Rouge and Knuckles get stuck on walls and the only way to get them off is to kill yourself, and Tails moves way to slow. Also, sometimes Sonic will enter a Mach Speed area of a level. While these would be pretty cool, he'll often crash into a wall or an enemy and you'll have to start all-over. There were even a few times when Sonic will run off of a loop-de-loop and died.
In Shadow's game, there are a lot of vehicles you can ride, but you'll often end up crashing them and getting them stuck. There is one level where the motorcycle is needed to finish the level, and you'll probably end up sending it off a cliff or getting it stuck and having to kill yourself to start over.
The Havok engine doesn't really work unless you play as Silver, due to his ability to pick up things and throw them around. But because his levels are more open-ended than Sonic's and Shadow's, you'll end up getting lost for what feels like hours.
Overall, it is very obvious that the game still needs work. It is playable, but there are far too many glitches for it to be enjoyable.
Gameplay Score: 4/10
I would recommend you not play this game and just read a summary of the story online and buy the soundtrack.
Sonic games used to be great, but unless SEGA can get their act together, expect him to go the way of such failures as Bubsy and Gex. They got it right with Sonic Adventure and nearly perfected it with Sonic Adventure 2. Why couldn't they do it again with this game?
Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Product Release: Sonic the Hedgehog (US, 01/30/07)
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